National Geographic : 1929 Jan
ARIZONA COMES OF AGE Photograph by Clifton Adams A SPHERICAL GAS TANK IN PII(ENIX, DESIGNED TO EQUALIZE THE PRESSURE FOR OUTLYING DISTRICTS This unique container is 60 feet in diameter and holds 300,000 cubic feet of gas. It has been proposed by some geographically-minded citizens of the capital that a huge map of the world be painted on its sides. baby dinosaur went skipping and crying after its colossal mother in the cool of an evening when the world was young and these hard rocks were mud. Now empty cans are rusting, and flivver wrecks mark the trail of men among the dinosaur tracks, and idlers copy them in red paint on garage walls. THE MEXICAN HAS BEEN ARIZONA'S CHORE BOY In the last decade Arizona's population has increased faster than that of any other State. To the increasing arrival of Mexi cans this is partly due, and in Arizona's rise from a wilderness to a more populous, prosperous place, most of the manual work has been done by Mexicans. Yet, useful as they are economically, their steady increase presents a sociologi cal riddle. They and her 46,000 Indians have retarded the State's social progress. From laboring classes in Wisconsin or New York often spring our best minds; but few recruits for leadership in finance, education, or the professions come from the Mexican or Indian population of our Southwest. Most of Arizona's cultured class, such as her lawyers, doctors, journalists, and engineers, are still imported. This cul tural leadership, drawn from diverse places, frees the Commonwealth from the crowd thinking of older communities and endows it with a certain intellectual non conformity. Precedents dismay it not at all. Swift, kaleidoscopic, full of action; the whole fascinating gamut of civilization, from stone ax to etcher's needle-that is Arizona's story. Cliff men fighting with spears in her youth; Spaniards in coats of mail, and bearded Yankees with traps or gold pans; cowboys, apt with Colt, cards, or noose. Tourists now, instead of trap pers; book agents, after road agents. Au tomobiles parking where yesterday horses stamped flies at hitchracks before a trader's corner store and saloon. "Hitch rack," "buggy." "beaver trap," "saloon," "six-gun"-fading words now, as Arizona grows up.